How a Prenuptial Agreement Can Affect the Divorce Process
The process of getting a divorce may be simple in Alberta, but its emotional, financial, and practical sides can be tiring. One way to make things easier and the process faster is to have a prenuptial agreement.
What Is the Divorce Process in Alberta?
The first step in the process is to file a divorce application with the court. Either party can do this, and the application must be served on the other party. Once the application is filed, the other party has 20 days to respond.
If the other party does not respond, the divorce will be granted because of irreconcilable differences. If the other party does respond, the divorce will proceed to trial.
At trial, the court will hear evidence from both parties and decide on the divorce. If the divorce is granted, the court will issue a divorce order. This order will outline the divorce terms, including child custody, child support, spousal support, and division of property.
Once the divorce order is issued, the divorce is final. However, the terms of the divorce order can be appealed.
How Can Prenuptial Agreements Affect the Divorce Process?
A prenuptial agreement, also known as a premarital agreement or antenuptial agreement, is a contract between two people before their marriage. The purpose of a prenuptial agreement is to define each person's financial rights and obligations in the event of a divorce.
In Alberta, prenuptial agreements are governed by the Family Law Act. The Act sets out specific requirements that must be met for a prenuptial agreement to be valid.
If a prenuptial agreement is found to be valid, it can have a significant impact on the divorce process. For example, a prenuptial agreement may:
- waive the right to spousal support
- determine how property will be divided in the event of a divorce
- determine which spouse will be responsible for debts incurred during the marriage
A prenuptial agreement can also affect how child support is calculated. However, the court trials will still finalize child custody and support.
What Are the Requirements for a Prenuptial Agreement?
If you are considering entering a prenuptial agreement, it is important to know the requirements to ensure that the agreement is legally binding. In Alberta, a few key requirements must be met for a prenuptial agreement to be valid.
First, both parties must be over the age of 18 and must be of sound mind. This means that they must understand the implications of the agreement and be willing to enter into it willingly and without coercion.
Both parties must also disclose their assets and liabilities to each other. This is important to ensure that both parties know what is protected in the agreement.
Finally, the agreement must be in writing and signed by both parties. It is also important to have the agreement witnessed by two independent witnesses.
If you are considering entering a prenuptial agreement, it is important to consult with a lawyer to ensure that the agreement meets all legal requirements and you are not getting fair treatment. A lawyer can also help protect your interests and ensure that the agreement is fair and equitable, making sure that you are well protected and informed throughout the process.
If you are seeking divorce lawyers in Medicine Hat, you can approach Hamilton Cahoon. We can help you in various matters such as divorce, estate planning, family law, personal injury and more. Get in touch with us to learn more.